How To Use An iPhone As An Apple TV Remote In 5 Steps, With Photos


How To Use An iPhone As An Apple TV Remote In 5 Steps, With Photos

The Apple TV is one of the leading products in the digital media player industry. It allows you to stream movies, television shows, and other content from the Internet to your TV. The Apple TV Siri remote is handy for navigating and browsing content. If you misplace yours or it gets damaged, you can use your iPhone to control channels. But how do you do that? Follow along with the steps below to learn how it’s done.

Why Use An iPhone As An Apple TV Remote?

A person may want an iPhone as an Apple TV remote for a few reasons. Maybe you lost your Apple TV remote and haven’t gotten a replacement. Or perhaps you want to enjoy the convenience of controlling your TV right on your phone. It could also be you prefer the iPhone remote over the Siri remote. All these are valid reasons. Before we review the steps, let’s discuss these reasons in detail.

Lost Your Remote

The Apple TV Siri Remote has gone through several changes over the years. From the first-generation release to the current third-generation device, the Siri Remote is practically more burdensome than helpful. It’s tiny, sensitive, and sometimes even confusing. Because it’s small and sleek, it’s also incredibly prone to getting lost. Don’t fret, though. If you lose or misplace your Apple TV remote, you can use an iPhone as an Apple TV remote instead. (But, if you then proceed to lose your phone, that’s a problem for another day.)

Added Convenience

Sometimes, you may have no problem with your Apple TV Siri Remote but want another convenient way to control your Apple TV. That’s where the iPhone comes in handy. You don’t have to walk around looking for your remote in the bedroom or kitchen. Using the iPhone as a remote, you can enjoy your favorite TV shows on your Apple TV as usual.

A Matter Of Preference

You may prefer the Apple TV interface on the iPhone more than the physical layout of the remote. The Apple TV Siri Remote has undergone significant upgrades three times now and will likely change again. Rather than continue to buy a new remote every time Apple puts one out, you might want to use the Apple TV remote on the iPhone instead.

Latest Apple TV Model
Apple TV 4K (3rd Generation)
  • 4K Dolby Vision, Dolby Atmos sound and HDR10+ support
  • Equipped with the powerful A15 Bionic chip
  • Third-generation Siri Remote with improved clickpad
  • Wi-Fi and Ethernet options available
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11/25/2023 09:20 pm GMT

How To Use An iPhone As An Apple TV Remote

Let’s walk through the steps required to use an iPhone as an Apple TV remote without further ado. For this piece, we’re using an iPhone XR. However, this guide will apply to anyone with an iPhone capable of running the latest iOS. It can also work just as successfully with an iPad. As of this writing, there’s no support for this feature on an Apple Watch or a MacBook. That’s not to say it might not appear in the future, but we’re sticking with the iPhone and the iPad for now. Now, follow along with the steps and photos below.

Step One: Open Settings

Settings app on an iPhone.
The Settings app has a gear icon on the iPhone.


Unlock your iPhone and go to the Settings app. This app comes pre-installed on your iPhone. If you can’t find the app, try searching for it by swiping down on the center of the screen and typing “Settings.”

Step Two: Go To Control Center

Control Center settings on an iPhone.
The iPhone’s Control Center settings let you add and remove widgets.


From the Settings app, tap the heading that says “Control Center.” You should see it in the third group of headings. Scroll down until you spot it, then tap the Control Center heading. It’s right underneath the heading that says “General.”

Step Three: Add Apple TV Remote Control

Control Center settings on an iPhone.

Add the Apple TV remote widget to use an iPhone as an Apple TV remote.


Thirdly, within the Control Center settings, scroll down until you see the block that reads “More Controls.” You’ll see an Apple TV icon near the top with the words “Apple TV Remote” beside it. Tap the green plus button to the left of the icon. This will add it to your group of Control Center widgets on your swipe-down menu.

Step Four: Open Control Center

Control Center on an iPhone.
Swipe down on the top right corner of your screen to access the Control Center.


Next, exit the Settings app and return to the home page. Swipe down from the top right-hand corner of the screen to access your Control Center. At the bottom of your Control Center widgets, you’ll now see the Apple TV Remote icon. Tap it to open up the remote feature.

Step Five: Use Apple TV Remote

Apple TV remote on an iPhone.
Connect your iPhone to the same Wi-Fi network as the Apple TV to use your phone as a remote.


Lastly, you can now use your iPhone as an Apple TV remote. (Make sure your phone is connected to the same Wi-Fi network as your Apple TV. Otherwise, it won’t work correctly. You can now use the phone exactly like the Apple TV Siri Remote. That’s all there is to it!

For a brief walkthrough of the steps mentioned above, we recommend this video:

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Apple TV?

The Apple TV is a digital media player and streaming device that connects right to your TV via HDMI. The Apple TV allows you to access a wide range of streaming services, movies, TV shows, and apps over the Internet. It works by connecting to your Wi-Fi network or Ethernet port and using this connection to stream content directly to your TV. You can navigate through the user-friendly interface using the Apple TV Siri Remote or the Apple TV app on your iPhone or iPad.

What does the Apple TV Siri Remote do?

The Apple TV Siri Remote is a small handheld device that comes with each new Apple TV package. It features a high-tech, touch-sensitive surface and a few additional buttons for navigation, volume control, and essential playback functions like play, pause, and fast-forward.

The Siri Remote allows you to control and navigate your Apple TV interface easily. Its sensitive touch surface lets you swipe, scroll, and select items on the screen. Newer models also let you use voice commands to search for content, launch apps, control playback, and more.

How much is a new Apple TV Siri Remote?

The current Apple TV Siri Remote, the third-generation model, retails new for $59.00. It serves as a return to form of sorts for Apple, who departed from the traditional Apple TV remote look for its second-generation model (and got plenty of criticism for it, too).

What's the difference between Apple TV and Apple TV+?

The Apple TV is a digital media player from Apple. Apple TV+, on the other hand, is Apple’s exclusive streaming home for all its original movies, television shows, documentaries, and specials. You can access Apple TV+ from your Apple TV home page, but it will cost you. Apple TV+ costs $6.99 a month (though most new Apple products offer you a free trial period before making you pay).

Can you use your Apple TV remote to play games?

Yes, you can play games on the Apple TV using the Apple TV remote. The Apple TV App Store offers a variety of games specifically designed for Apple TV, including casual games, puzzles, multiplayer games, and more.

You can use the Apple TV Siri Remote as a game controller or connect compatible Bluetooth game controllers for an even better gaming experience. Some games also support multiplayer modes, allowing you to play with friends and family on the same TV with multiple remotes.

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